I have made several trips to India. Part of my fascination is Sai Baba
in the Southern part of the country. On one trip, my travelling companion
(Evelyn Ostin) and I stayed at the Ashram. We were invited to a wedding
-- a re-marriage of an elderly couple who had been separated by the husband's
death -- and then revived in the hospital morgue by Sai Baba!
Traditionally, Khir is served at Indian weddings. And this is how I remember
2 quarts milk
1/3 c. long-grain rice
1 c. sugar
½ c. finely chopped unsalted blanched almonds
The seeds of 3 whole cardamon pods or 1/4 t. cardamon seeds, coarsely
crushed in a mortar and pestle
1 t. rose water
1/4 c. unsalted sliced, blanched almonds, lightly toasted
1. In a heavy 5-6 qt. saucepan, bring the milk to a boil over high heat,
stirring constantly to prevent a skin from forming on the surface. Reduce
the heat to moderate and stirring occasionally, cook for 30 minutes. Add
the rice and continue cooking and stirring frequently for 30 minutes,
or until the rice is very soft, in fact until the grains have almost disintegrated.
2. Add sugar and finely chopped almonds and stir for 15 minutes over low
heat until the pudding is thick enough to coat the spoon heavily. Remove
the pan from the heat, stir in the cardamon and rose water, and pour the
pudding into a shallow 7 x 12-inch baking dish. With a rubber spatula
spread it out evenly and smooth the top. Sprinkle with toasted almonds.
3. Refrigerate the Khir for at least 4 hours, or until it is thoroughly
chilled and somewhat firm to the touch.
(from "The Cooking of India," Time-Life Books)